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RCS in the News

Indian nationals need a new visa: Britain is shooting itself in the foot with its backward system

By Tim Hewish, Royal Commonwealth Society
This article first appeared in City AM
 on 13 July 2016

The UK-India relationship is one of both traditional and contemporary strength. Current business secretary Sajid Javid has described the partnership as being at a 'key juncture' and as providing 'opportunities we would be foolish to ignore'.

And with a UK-India trade agreement hailed a 'deal made in heaven' by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), now is indeed the moment for the UK to reassert its global attractiveness.

That is why we have launched a report in partnership with leading aviation and tourism groups recommending that the UK matches the recent UK-Chinese deal and offers Indian nationals a new two-year £87 visitor visa for business and leisure purposes.

Last year, 420,000 Indians visited the UK and spent a total of £433m. Yet Britain’s market share of global Indian tourists has halved over the last decade, costing the UK economy an estimated £0.5bn per year and over 8,000 jobs...

Continue reading the full article 

Articles published elsewhere:

'UK must do more to attract Indian tourists' Garavi Gujarat 3 August 2016

Britain 'must improve visa process to attract wealthy Indian tourists’ London Evening Standard 13 July 2016 

Call for cheaper, simpler visas for Indians to boost UK tourism International Business Times 6 July 2016  

UK report calls for cheaper, simpler visas for Indians Times of India 6 July 2016 

Plan to offer longer, cheaper UK visa for Indians Hindustan Times 5 July 2016

Calls for a new India visitor visa to boost UK tourism Asian Voice 4 July 2016

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